How to Keep Your House Safe During a Bad Storm or Wind Event

There are precautions you may take if your house is in a region where hurricanes, tornadoes, or strong winds are common. Taking steps to prepare your home can make a huge difference in how well you, your family and your home can recover from an emergency.

Build a Safe Room

A safe room protects a family or business from severe storms and wind. It can also help prevent a home from being destroyed. A safe space is one of the most affordable ways to secure your family in a disaster. It can be constructed in a closet, bedroom, or spare room. The room should be built from materials that can withstand high winds and heavy debris during a storm. Ideally, the walls should be reinforced with concrete or metal sheathing and consider installing hurricane windows where the room is built.

Stay Indoors

A common strategy is to stay indoors when a severe storm or wind event is forecast. However, this can be dangerous. The most important reason is that staying indoors increases the risk of illness. It also depresses your mood and can lead to stress-related health issues such as a weakened immune system. You’ll also miss out on the benefits of exposure to natural light, which helps regulate your internal clock, synthesize vitamin D and improve your mood. Plus, staying indoors can increase your eyestrain and lower your libido. To avoid these effects, get out and spend time outside as much as possible. It can include short walks and spending time in parks or other outdoor spaces.

Take Shelter in a Basement

Generally, the safest place to seek shelter is a basement or a small interior room on the lowest level of a sturdy building. Avoid windows, which can be blown in or destroyed by a tornado. In homes without basements, a bathroom or closet on the ground floor is often a good option for taking shelter. Choose a spot near the center of the room and away from windows. Ensure you have enough protective gear, such as a sleeping bag or mattress, ready to go when you need to shelter quickly. Also, know where heavy items are stored in your house that could be crushed if you were to shelter under them during a storm.

Bring a Disaster Kit

A disaster kit is a collection of essential items a family may need during an emergency. These items include food, water, batteries, medicines, a radio, first aid supplies, and more.

Keep your disaster supply kit in a backpack, duffel bag or suitcase that is easy to carry and locate. It should be in a place that is accessible to everyone in the household.

Identify shelter areas in your home, such as basements, underneath interior stairs, closets, or interior rooms. These places should be away from windows and glass doors to avoid injury or damage to your property.

Evacuate Manufactured Homes

If you reside there, you might need to leave your mobile or prefabricated home during a hurricane or other severe weather event. The local officials will determine the evacuation zone based on the track and strength of a storm. Evacuating is the best way to keep yourself and your family safe. It is also the best way to protect your property and reduce the chances of damage to your home and other structures. Manufactured homes are built to stringent federal standards for safety. It includes the use of design and quality assurance professionals during construction.

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